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It was an impulse buy but I just got a Lionel 6-31936 Pennsylvania Flyer Ready To Run train set. Used but in like new condition. The set will be setup under the Christmas tree. All I know that it is powered by a transformer (AC not DC, correct?) and runs on the FasTrack (the rail with a built-in roadbed).

I am new to Lionel trains and pretty much have no experience with other scales. If I like the train, I will look into buying other rolling stock, maybe a new loco. But before I go on a shopping spree, I have a few questions.

1. For rolling stock, I have to look at the O-27 models, correct? Are there any other gauges/scales that will work? Are there any incompatibilities between the couplers?

2. For the locomotives, are there any incompatibilities? I know that some basic sets run on DC which I assume is not compatible with my set.

3. Any options to add a remote operation to the set?

Thank you in advance.
 

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Yep, that's an AC set. As far as rolling stock, anything that you see that looks good does fine. The lobster claw couplers on O-gauge 3-rail are all compatible. If you shop the used market, you can typically find some very decent cars to fill out your set in the $10-20 range.

Adding remote operation is a complicated question, if you're interested in going there, I'd consider the Lionchief and LionChief Plus models, they come with remote control standard.
 

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O scale is actually two or more scales.

One I would call a modeler's scale and I believe that is a strict 1/48 scale, highly detailed, and expensive. The other is what I call a 'toy' scale where practically anything goes as far as rolling stock and accessories, less (if any) detail, and most products are out of scale. Some accessories are grossly out of scale.

It depends upon what you want to do. If you want a scale 'model' railroad that looks and operates like the real thing, or a toy train set going around in a circle at Christmas time.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the replies. I am not looking for a real-life scale look. Just a train or two with various cars to setup under the tree and later setup in the basement so kids can play.
 

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Thanks for the replies. I am not looking for a real-life scale look. Just a train or two with various cars to setup under the tree and later setup in the basement so kids can play.
But you may want all the cars to be similar in size. This thread explains that with pictures.
 

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The "27" in "O-27" is the diameter of the track if you made a circle. Fastrack has various diameter curve track pieces. There are locomotives and rolling stock that cannot navigate the 27" curves. But if something says O-27 compatible, it's gonna work on all the curves.
 

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The "27" in "O-27" is the diameter of the track if you made a circle. Fastrack has various diameter curve track pieces. There are locomotives and rolling stock that cannot navigate the 27" curves. But if something says O-27 compatible, it's gonna work on all the curves.
O-27 got it's name from it's original 27" diameter curves. At the time a sharper curve than tubular O track and it's original 31" diameter curves. But both have/do come in various sized curves from several mfgs.

The main difference is track height and the size of the rail. They'll mate but need an adapter pin that fits O-27 track on side and O track on the other. And O track is slightly taller so the O-27 needs a bit of a shim at the interconnection.

Any O acale train will run on O or O-27 straight track. It's the tighter curves that may prohibit a longer engine or car from running on a smaller curve. That would be listed in the mfg's spec.'s as "minimum curve".
 
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